Glendale Raptors Sign Celester Asuega

Glendale Raptors signed Celester Asuega for the 2019 Major League Rugby season. The 24-years-old fullback and center is 6’0″, and 215 lbs.

Celester is from Pago Pago, American Samoa and moved to California in 2011 and played with the Dead RAbbits RFC. He attended Silverado High School in Victorville, playing football and track before graduating in 2013.

During the 2013-14 season he received a football scholarship at Southeast Community College in San Diego and also played rugby with San Diego Old Aztecs.

He then transferred to New Mexico Highlands University, attending as a Criminal Justice major from 2014-2017. While with the team, they won back-to-back NSCRO Men’s 7s National Championships in 2015 and 2016. In 15s the team made it to the NSCRO Final 4 in 2014 and finished in 3rd place in 2016. Many rugby observers felt that if the Vatos had played in the in the Collegiate Men’s Divison of the Penn Mutual Collegiate Rugby Championship, that they could have contended as well. Celester’s teammates included Kevon Williams, a current Eagles 7s players and Jeremy Misailegalu, who plays in the MLR.

From 2015-2018 he played with the Denver Barbarians 7s and helped the team gain second place in Club National 7s in 2015, second in 2017, and fourth in 2018. He also played with the team in the Rugbytown 7s and with Denver in the Halloween 7s in 2015. Celester also played with the Denver Barbarians in the 2016 Pacific Rugby Premiership.

In 2017, he moved to Christchurch, New Zealand and played with Marist RFC and with Canterbury. He returned to Colorado in 2018 and played with the Glendale Rugby Academy and in the 2018 exhibition season with the Raptors. This lead to his signing an Associate Player contract with the Raptors for 2019.

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North American Rugby News With A USA Slant